Teaching people about HIV in war zones, like Ukraine

There is some news worth noting in the fight to control HIV. The RINJ Foundation is a Canada-based global organization that fights for the rights of women and girls around the world. Sexual violence and other forms of gender-based violence are key threats to the safety of women and girls, because of the crime in the first instance, and because of the spread of disease like HIV in the second instance of the crime, says the RINJ Women in Ukraine.

Alona Adamovich is an organizer and director of RINJ in her country, Ukraine. She says that the safety of women and girls in Ukraine is the worst it has ever been, but it in her lifetime has never been good.

HIV Progress

Progression of HIV to AIDS courtesy: NIH/HIV.gov

Author demonstrates PPE apparel needed during pandemic for Test-and-Treat- project

HIV/AIDS has been around for 40 years and still no vaccine. There are test vaccines but unfunded. Almost 1 million people die from HIV/AIDS each year; in Myanmar the leading cause of HIV is rape; in some countries HIV/AIDS is the leading cause of death. “HIV Test and Treat Projects have not stopped because of the Pandemic. There is an even greater need to ‘test and treat’, ” says RINJ Woman Sharon Santiago from the Philippines. Photo Credit: Sharon Santiago

“Rape and incest have spread HIV/AIDS for years, but today, many Ukrainian soldiers are raping the same girls and spreading the disease among the troops,” Ms. Adamovich opined.

In Iran, this problem is worse. According to Behar Abbasi who is working on the protest side of the ‘house’, and meeting hundreds of regional organizers and hearing their stories, says life for young women and schoolgirls in Iran has never been worse. Dale Carter who oversees the safety of the operations says that treating HIV is a huge challenge.

“Statistically, if you are raped by an IRGC soldier or a cop in Iran, you will become infected with HIV and eventually develop AIDS unless it is detected and successful treatment is established. It’s that bad, and there is no cure,” Ms. Carter reports.

Finally, FPM.news reached Dr. Nassima al Amouri, a very busy woman who is the RINJ medical director for the region and a specialist in dealing with HIV prevention. She describes “sexually-violence-transmitted HIV as an epidemic in the war zones of Ukraine, Iran, Afghanistan and Syria, for starters.”

So what can women do? Learning and self testing is the answer

“The last man who tried to rape me I told him ‘I have HIV/AIDS’ and he fled instantly, said Dr. Nassima al Amouri. “But I do not recommend this. The would-be-rapist might just kill the next woman who tries that ploy.”

That was a rather profound revelation that makes sense. 


A team of workers of The RINJ Foundation in the Philippines where HIV has also reached epidemic proportions, has created a learning tool, a simple lesson to teach young people several things about HIV Transmission. It’s a test turned into a lesson, and it is very good according to specialists who have reviewed the work.

According to The RINJ Foundation, “the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic slowed us down from implementing the tools we have for ending HIV but we are getting back on track. Who is “We”? The human race.”

Video: What’s new with HIV control for 2023? Listen to Dr. Anthony Fauci at the last major global HIV/AIDS science event. Not much has changed during the COVID-19 pandemic except the injectable cabotegravir is now available. Unlike the daily pill, an injection every 8 weeks is nearly 100% effective at preventing the infection of high-risk candidates for the programme.

Read: HIV prevention injectable-cabotegravir prevents HIV near 100%

In the HIV world, Dr. Fauci is considered to be a foremost expert in HIV prevention. He is very highly respected.